[kuh-loh-kwee-uh-liz-uh m]
See more synonyms for colloquialism on

Origin of colloquialism

First recorded in 1800–10; colloquial + -ism
Related formscol·lo·qui·al·ist, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for colloquialism

expression, informality

Examples from the Web for colloquialism

Contemporary Examples of colloquialism

Historical Examples of colloquialism

  • Professor Mathews seems to have a special dislike for this colloquialism.

    The Verbalist

    Thomas Embly Osmun, (AKA Alfred Ayres)

  • There, Mr. Editor, you have a pleasing comminglement of romance and colloquialism.

    Old Fogy

    James Huneker

  • Also, red-coats of old; whence lobster-box, a colloquialism for barracks.

    The Sailor's Word-Book

    William Henry Smyth

  • Also a colloquialism for marque, as a letter of mart or marque.

    The Sailor's Word-Book

    William Henry Smyth

  • "Not worth a stiver" is a colloquialism to express a person's poverty.

    The Sailor's Word-Book

    William Henry Smyth

British Dictionary definitions for colloquialism


  1. a word or phrase appropriate to conversation and other informal situations
  2. the use of colloquial words and phrases
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for colloquialism

1810, "a colloquial word or phrase," from colloquial + -ism.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper